Before 1990, internet users were not able to connect to a website server and view its content (web pages) without being physically there, but in 1990, Sir Tim Berners-Lee created the first-ever web browser called WorldWideWeb.
A web browser is an application that allows you to access a website. When you visit a website you are requesting a page from the web server and the web browser finds that page and displays it for you to see.
Over the years, as computers became smaller and could be held in the palms of our hands, web browsers were also adapted for mobile devices with internet access which were increasingly becoming popular. With an estimated global usage of 5 billion.
One such web browser is Google Chrome, developed by Google and released in September 2008, it was built using different code libraries and open-source projects. Its main aim was to make the user experience smooth and fast with its minimalistic user interface. From the very first release, chrome passed the Acid1 and Acid2 tests.
Google Chrome is the most used/preferred web browser on mobile because it comes pre-installed on most smartphones running the AndroidOS which makes up 70% of the global smartphone market and it’s a user-friendly mobile web browser.
This article is aimed at breaking down the basics of how to use Google Chrome on your mobile device.
What is Google Chrome?
Google Chrome or Chrome is a fast, secure, and easy-to-use web browser built using different code libraries from Google and other third parties like Mozilla’s Netscape Portable Runtime, Network Security Services, Skia Graphics Engine, SQLite, and a host of other open-source projects but most of Chrome's source code comes from Google's free and open-source software project called Chromium.
Chrome also has some Built-in Tools that are developer friendly, like the element inspector which allows the developer to look into the DOM and view what makes up a webpage. It also has a built-in language translator to help translate to your preferred language.
Fun Fact: Did you know Google Chrome for Android and iOS was launched in 2012?
Why Google Chrome?
Chrome is arguably the most used mobile web browser because it is the default browser on most Android Smartphones so there is no need to download and install it. But if you must, here’s a guide on downloading and installing chrome on your mobile.
Chrome has Sync, which allows you to sync your browser to your PC and enjoy all of Google's services.
Chrome has a Password manager that keeps your passwords and makes them available on any device you are signed in to. The Password manager also cross-checks your passwords and alerts you of any data breach on websites you’ve signed in to so you can change them and keep yourself safe.
Chrome has the option to add your preferred Payment method and Address to make your online payments and shipping seamless and fast.
Because Chrome takes security seriously, options like Safe Browsing, which keeps you from accessing malicious websites and content online are turned on by default. Also, Chrome will only connect to an “HTTPS” website.
Generally, Chrome mobile is user-friendly and keeps its interface simple.
Installation guide for Android and iOS
Chrome for Android can be downloaded from the Google Play Store
[image credit: www.techcrunch.com]
- Chrome for iOS can be downloaded from the App Store
- Click “Get”
- Click “Install”
- Enter your Apple ID Password and click “OK”
How to Use
Using the Search Bar
Using Voice: Click on the Microphone icon on the search bar.
Using Google Lens: Click on the Camera on the search bar.
Inserting URLs: To insert a URL/website address, just type the address in the area specified.
Bookmark: To create a new bookmark, click on the arrowed star. To access your bookmarks click on the area specified.
New tab: To create a new tab, click on “New tab”.
Incognito tab: To open an “Incognito tab” click the area specified. Incognito mode keeps no browser history, it is suitable for guest users.
Downloads: To access your _“Downloads” _click on the area specified
- Turn on Sync: You have to be signed into your Google account to Sync your data.
- Choose Search Engine
- Password Manager
- Payment methods / Addresses
- Privacy and security
- Homepage: You can set your favorite website as a homepage so you don’t have to look for it every time.
Google Chrome Alternatives
As awesome as Google Chrome is, there are other web browsers that offer some features not unique to Chrome.
Firefox is a free and open-source web browser developed by Mozilla Foundation. It prides itself on being a privacy-centered web browser. It also has Sync and Password manager.
A unique feature Firefox has is that it blocks ads, trackers, and fingerprinting by default. A stand-alone browser dedicated to completely blocking online trackers and third-party ads called Focus is also available.
Safari is the native web browser pre-installed on Mac and iOS devices.
It has a clean design and is easy to use. The only downside is that it’s not as customizable and lacks add-ons like other browsers.
A unique feature Safari has aside been the native web browser for iOS is its seamless integration and syncing with other Apple devices and the option of using Apple Pay in-browser.
is a privacy-focused web browser built on the _Chromium _source code but without the Google codes that deal with privacy. It is a look-like Chrome but with better privacy features browser.
Unique Feature: It was the first web browser to integrate a cryptocurrency wallet and the first to reward its users for viewing ads using the Basic Attention Token (BAT).
…And so many others.
Google Chrome is among the top-tier most preferred web browsers in the mobile and PC industry with its user-friendly interface, built-in functions, and speed, it is an industry-standard.
Privacy has been a concern for everyone and looking at Google’s policies on data collection, it means that users will have to trade up some privacy for functionality and ease of use. But what you value more will fuel your decision to use Google Chrome or not. Is it privacy or ease of use?
There are other browsers that offer more privacy and are also built using the same open-source project as Chrome. They also collect less data than Chrome and are compatible with the Chrome add-on library.
What do you think? Is Chrome worth its spot as the most-used web browser in the world? Do you value your privacy more? Or do you prefer having an easy-to-use browser with plenty of built-in tools? I’ll like to hear from you, and thank you for reading. ❤️
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